Saturday, August 11, 2012

Hot Rocks 56 miler


I stepped out of my little box that I have made for myself and joined the cyclist community today with a bunch of friends.  A few of us had decided to ride this a month or so ago.  I needed it as a training ride for that half ironman in 41 days and 12 hours...but who is counting...
Lucky for me I can always check their website and know exactly how long until D-Day....

There were 4 of us gals (Catherine, Teri, and Kristi, and I) and Catherine's husband and his friends.

We met at 5:45am and headed to Rockwall.  Got there in plenty of time and it was very laid back.  Not like the triathlon morning crowd where everyone is busy getting transition set up and using the bathrooms...Pretty much everyone just hung out at their car until it was time to go ride. 
Hanging out, not really sure what the hell we had signed up for...
Teri, Kristi, Me, and Catherine

 When we made our way to the start line, it looked like this:

Look at all those bikes in front of me!!! And there were a gazillion more behind me...

Aren't they cute? How could you not want to ride with these biker chicks!
Not long after taking the pic of my biker chick friends, I go to put my sunglasses on and they break! Oh well, I have had them for years but they are my favorite pair and now I am left with nada.  

So off we go, and the first few minutes were nerve wracking for me, because you couldn't clip in both feet because there were so many people.  You had to one leg it and I was so sure I was going to fall and knock down like 30 dudes.  I felt like such a rookie! Totally out of my element.  I wanted to go and find a big bunch of trees and go run out in the forest!  

We eventually get going and somehow we all got separated.  I eventually caught up to speedster Catherine (only because she waited at the rest stop).  We kept looking for Teri and Kristi and never saw them again. They were doing the 45 miler and so we knew they would cut off at some point but I thought we would see them along the way.  About mile 20, we got into a group and rode with them for several miles and it was so much fun.  I love drafting!  So much easier.  Eventually, we got out of that and stopped at another rest stop and continued on.  The hills were endless on this course and if I never see another hill again while riding a bike, I would be totally okay with that.  I may have cussed them out loud while going up them...(Sorry Mom...Catherine made me) By mile 30, I was telling myself "only 26 more miles" and for some reason that would sound easy and then I would think a little longer and realize that meant I was only half way done!  So I then decided it was not in my best interest to think in fractions.  I got to 30 and my next goal was 40...from 30-40 was the hardest mentally for me.  We continued to hit the aid stations and cuss hills until we got to 51 and from there on in it was smooth sailing.  No more stupid asphalt roads or hills...I will never take for granted concrete roads again. 

We got to the finish line and it was so anti-climatic. I guess as a runner/triathlete I am spoiled by everyone cheering you on at the finish.  In fact, I was a little pissed.  I worked way too hard to ride straight off the course and to my car.  No finish line, no cheers, no goat signs, nada, zip, nothing...not even any people! So we loaded up our bikes and went to the food area and loaded up on sandwiches and Blue Bell banana fudge pops...They don't have Blue Bell at running stuff, so that is a plus! 

Overall, I had a lot of fun.  I have been working hard on figuring out my nutrition on this bike thing and I think I have it figured out now.  That was my 3rd 50 miler bike ride, and the last two I have been feeling fine because I actually ate while riding!  Amazing how that works!  

I am really looking forward to the half ironman....I say that now...I may not say that in 41 days and 20 hours though!

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